Openly Gay Kicker Hopes to Play in the NFL
Alan Gendreau has been openly gay since he was 15 years old. He was a placekicker for Middle Tennessee State from 2008-2011. He is the all-time leading scorer in the Sun Belt Conference with 295 points. His is hoping his next kick will take place in an NFL stadium.
Although it is expected that several NFL players will be ‘coming out’ this season, the league has never signed an openly gay player.
He wasn’t drafted in 2012, but then very few kickers were. Whether valid or not, punters and place kickers receive little respect in the NFL, and to use a draft pick for one is not common.
“Right now, looking back when I’m 40, I can’t say I gave it my best shot,” Gendreau told Outsports. “I can’t say I really tried to make it into the NFL. Last year I did it half-assed. If I don’t give it everything I have now, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life.”
“It’s totally legit that he can get into the league,” Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, a proponent of gay rights, told Outsports. “Place-kicking is all about doing this one specific skill set. And if you can do that, you can make it whether you’ve been out of football for one year or 10 years.”
He is hoping to attend the OTA’s, and, if necessary, later the training camps and tryout as a walk-on.
Kickers are very aware of pressure. I’ve watched them win or lose regular season games, as well as Super Bowls. If he is judged on his talent alone, it would seem unreasonable that he will not be signed by one of the 32 teams for the minimum salary. Kickers are like disposable towels, teams always seem to be in need of another one.
Wish the young man luck, it’s tough to make it in the NFL if there are no concerns. Being gay shouldn’t be one of them.
Columnist-The Guardian Express